For many people, personal safety is a top concern. This is why we do our best to drive carefully, take care of our health, and avoid potentially dangerous situations. However, despite our best efforts, our own health and safety are not always within our control. In some situations, other people have the capacity to harm us with their actions.
Even if you do everything possible to protect yourself and your family, you could still end up getting hurt. Fortunately, if you are harmed by someone else, you may be able to open a personal injury case against them. These cases can help you secure compensation for your suffering and ensure that the individual who is responsible is brought to justice.
To navigate personal injury law, it is important to find an experienced personal injury attorney to help you. With the right legal representation, you have an increased chance of earning the compensation and support you deserve during this time.
Kenneth M. Sigelman & Associates: Your Riverside Personal Injury Law Firm
When it comes to Riverside personal injury attorneys, no firm is better equipped to meet your needs than our team at Kenneth M. Sigelman & Associates. We have decades of combined experience in this field, and we have represented clients in all kinds of personal injury cases. This expertise gives you a distinct advantage in the courtroom, which benefits both the outcome of your case and the settlement that you receive.
Compassion is a top priority at our firm. We understand that personal injury cases put our clients in a vulnerable position, so we do everything in our power to respect your situation and walk you through every step of the process. Many of our clients find this offers them reassurance and confidence throughout the personal injury claim process.
Though we are compassionate with our clients, we are cutthroat in the courtroom. We truly believe that individuals need to be held responsible when they act negligently or hurt someone because of their poor decision-making. We use all of the resources and knowledge at our disposal to create an airtight and reliable argument that will hold up against your opponents.
No other firm in the Riverside area offers legal services like ours. We can promise that you will have high-quality legal representation throughout your entire personal injury case.
What Is a Personal Injury Accident and Claim?
Personal injury accidents encompass any situation in which one person’s negligence causes an injury for another. This is a broad area of law that includes many different situations and scenarios. However, it is important to understand that the key to all personal injury cases is negligence. If one party was shirking their responsibilities in some way, they were behaving negligently. If this negligence harms someone, their actions are punishable by law.
These cases take place in civil court because they involve one person taking legal action against another person rather than the government taking action. This also means that the individual pressing charges has the right to drop the charges at any time.
Personal injury accident cases help victims to get the financial support that they need after an accident. Insurance does not usually cover everything for which a victim is responsible. Personal injury settlements often account for:
- Medical bills and ongoing care fees
- Compensation for the time taken off of work to heal
- Compensation for any job restraint or diminished earning ability
- Pain and suffering that the victim has endured
This settlement has the capacity to support an individual while they heal. The money may also ensure that they have access to proper medical care throughout their healing journey.
Why Do I Need a Riverside Personal Injury Attorney?
Many people falsely believe they can navigate the legal system without an attorney or other legal representation. Though this may technically be legal, it is not wise. Very few people win their cases when they represent themselves. Those that do win often see a reduced settlement or poor compensation.
Though your personal injury situation may be straightforward in your eyes, your opponent’s attorney will work diligently to make the situation seem ambiguous. If they succeed, the jury will be unable to convict your opponent, and you will not get a settlement from your case. When you hire a Riverside injury attorney, we can refute your opponent’s claims and show your side of the story. In many situations, this is enough for the jury to side with you and for you to receive compensation.
It is important to note there is a lot on the line in your personal injury case. Settlements can reach upwards of a million dollars depending on the situation. These situations are not the right time to try and save money on an attorney. Instead, it is in your best interest to hire a good attorney and fight for the settlement that you deserve.
Finally, you must remember that you will likely be in a lot of pain while your case progresses and you start to heal. If you try to fight your own case, you will likely only add stress to your situation. This can slow down your healing process and even risk worsening your condition.
Types of Personal Injury Cases
Some accidents and injuries occur because of a mutual mistake or a force outside of anyone’s control, such as the weather. These scenarios do not call for a personal injury claim. In order for your claim to be legitimate, the person who hurt you must have acted negligently and must hold the majority of the fault.
As noted, there are many different kinds of personal injury cases that can occur. This is because there are many different scenarios in which a person may act negligently and harm someone else. It is important to be aware of the different kinds of personal injury cases so that you can be aware if one of them happens to you.
Car Accident Cases
The most common type of personal injury case is a car accident case. Though car accidents happen all of the time, a majority of them occur because one driver was not following essential driving laws. Many car accidents, therefore, warrant a personal injury claim because one person is usually at fault.
It can be difficult to understand how negligence comes into play in a car accident. The law considers driving negligence to be any situation in which a driver does not follow road rules. Examples include:
- Driving erratically or engaging in road rage
- Talking, texting, or scrolling on one’s phone while driving
- Engaging in distracted driving practices
- Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Ignoring signs or signals
- Failing to yield
There are many more scenarios in which a driver may neglect the rules of the road and harm another person. Any accident or collision in which negligence was a factor may be eligible for a personal injury claim.
Premises Liability and Slip and Fall Cases
When you enter a public space, such as a store, eatery, theater, or museum, you put your safety in the hands of the owners and managers of that facility. In return, there are strict rules and laws about what proprietors must do in order to keep their business safe for customers and open to the public. If they fail to follow these laws and someone gets hurt, they are liable for any consequences that may occur, including injuries.
Among other responsibilities, facility owners must:
- Keep walkways well-lit, dry, and clear of debris
- Keep the facility maintained and up-to-date to avoid collapsing scaffolding or broken amenities
- Have the elevator and other machinery regularly inspected
- Notify guests of any hazards that cannot be immediately removed or resolved
- Notify guests of areas that are off-limits through appropriate signage or locked doors
Unfortunately, it is common for facility managers to fail to keep walkways clean and safe for guests. This results in many different slip and fall cases that can have tragic outcomes.
Though we trust doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and other medical professionals to keep us safe and heal our bodies, they do not always appropriately do their jobs. In some instances, a condition or injury is beyond their control. In other instances, they commit medical malpractice.
Medical malpractice is a complicated subject. Essentially, it encompasses any situation in which a medical professional neglects their duty and causes harm to a patient. These scenarios encompass situations in which the professional should have known better or made a mistake that was avoidable and based on negligence.
Some examples of medical malpractice include:
- Birth injuries
- Operating on the incorrect patient or body part
- Leaving surgical tools or equipment inside the body
- Neglecting basic patient hygiene
- Prescribing or filling the wrong medication or dosage
- Failing to diagnose or misdiagnosing a patient
These situations can be complicated because they do not always indicate that malpractice has occurred. For example, a doctor that fails to diagnose a patient when they are not exhibiting many indicating symptoms has not committed negligence. However, if there are clear indications of a disease and a doctor fails to diagnose the patient, they may have committed malpractice.
In many scenarios, attorneys will compare the medical professional’s actions with those of other industry professionals at the same level. For example, if you go to an oncologist who has been practicing for 20 years and they fail to diagnose you with cancer but other oncologists with the same length of experience can easily diagnose you, the first oncologist is liable for medical malpractice. If others at the same level would have done things differently, you may have a claim on your hands.
Unfortunately, not all personal injury victims survive their accidents. In some situations, the victim passes away from their injuries, leaving their family to deal with the aftermath of an unexpected death. This is not only emotionally painful but incredibly difficult financially as well.
Wrongful death cases are a type of personal injury case that can be created by a deceased victim’s family. Through these cases, the family can seek compensation for:
- Any medical bills associated with the accident
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of the deceased’s income
- Pain and suffering
Though no amount of money can undo the pain of losing a loved one, it can help families to focus on their grief without worrying about financial support.
In some situations, items are manufactured incorrectly or do not go through a quality check. When this occurs, the manufacturer is liable for any damage their product does to consumers. If an item explodes, backfires, combusts, etc., they should be held responsible for their defective product’s poor manufacturing. After all, they neglected to properly create and check their product according to industry standards and laws.
Products of all kinds can be defective. Everything from cars to prescription drugs can be manufactured incorrectly and have the potential to seriously hurt someone. If you are maimed or injured by a defective product, drug, medical device, etc., you can create a personal injury case against the offending company. You should not have to pay for medical bills or repairs associated with the incident.
Proving Negligence in a Personal Injury Case
As the prosecuting party in your personal injury case, it is your responsibility to prove that the defendant, the individual or company who hurt you, directly caused your injury through negligence. This can be a complicated process, even if the fault seems obvious.
Fortunately, it is your Riverside personal injury attorney’s job to collect evidence and help you build your argument against your opponent. There are many forms of evidence you may collect, depending on your situation. Some examples include:
- Video or CCTV footage of the accident
- Eyewitness accounts of the accident
- Medical records
- Photos of the injuries
- Any debris from the accident
- Photos of the accident scene, including applicable signage or lack thereof
There may be other pieces of evidence your attorney will collect depending on your unique case. However, it is your attorney’s job to help you build your case through clear evidence and proof. In doing so, their aim is to get the jury to side with your account of the incident rather than that of your opponent.
Settling Your Personal Injury Case
Though some personal injury cases do go to trial, many settle outside of court. This often occurs because a defendant realizes that the prosecution has sufficient evidence to find them guilty. Rather than endure the court process, they can come to an agreement outside of court.
If this happens, you may compromise a small amount of your settlement sum. However, you will avoid courtroom litigation fees, which can be significant. It is important to trust your attorney to advise you on what to do. In many scenarios, it is worth bringing the case to court. In others, settlement may be the best option for all parties.
Q: What Percentage Do Most Personal Injury Lawyers Take?
A: Each personal injury attorney is different, so it is important to discuss finances with potential firms before you begin working with them. Some attorneys charge hourly, while others take a percentage of the settlement. The average settlement percentage that attorneys take is 33%, but some attorneys take more while others take less. Discussing fees beforehand ensures that you can afford your attorney’s services throughout the legal process.
Q: What Should You Ask When Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney?
A: When interviewing potential personal injury attorneys, ask about their experience in situations like yours. Having direct experience in your specific case type helps your chances immensely. They should feel confident in their ability to help you and believe that your case will be successful. You should also discuss their rates with them. In some scenarios, you may want to also ask for references to ensure that they are legitimate.
Q: Why Do You Need a Lawyer for Personal Injury?
A: Representing yourself in a personal injury case is incredibly risky. In fact, you can end up losing money overall if you represent yourself. A lawyer can properly craft and argue your case and gives you the best chance of receiving the settlement that you deserve. Legal representation also shows the court that you are serious about your situation and feel that it warrants investment in an attorney.
Q: What Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Do?
A: Personal injury lawyers are in charge of collecting evidence to support your account of what happened. As the prosecution, it is your attorney’s job to prove that the defendant’s actions directly caused your injuries or ailments and that they should be held responsible for the financial consequences. Building and arguing a case requires a significant amount of time, paperwork, and evidence collection.
Contact Kenneth M. Sigelman & Associates
Our team has been representing personal injury clients in the Riverside area for many years. We understand the intricacies of this industry and are confident we can help you win your case. Our experience and service are unmatched in the Riverside area, which is why so many families trust us with their most vulnerable situations.
For more information about our services or how we can help you win your personal injury case, contact Kenneth M. Sigelman & Associates today.